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STAMFORD, Conn. – It’s not too late for a few last resolutions as the new year really gets cranking, Here are a few from the analysts at Gartner Inc. for helping IT professionals keep their careers on track while minding the bits and bytes at their credit unions. The main message is to make sure you know where the nuts and bolts go, and not just in the server rack. “In 2003, IT professionals who maintain only a technical toolbox will be at risk,” says Diane Morello, vice president and research director for Gartner. “Executives will seek out and elevate those IT professionals who demonstrate a knowledge of how the organization can apply technology to achieve business goals,” Morello says. She also says tough times are the time to shine. “When it comes to careers in 2003, this is no time for complacency,” Morello says. “Honestly face your strengths and weaknesses, immerse yourself in the business and demonstrate leadership in good times and in bad.” Here are the eight goals compiled by analysts at the Connecticut-based research and advisory firm: *Take inventory of your technology and business knowledge. Be honest about bare spots in your portfolio and expand your knowledge in the coming year. *Get smart about the key drivers of your business. Build awareness by examining your organization’s press releases, annual report and public statements. Network with business counterparts to discuss their financial and operational objectives. Become the business knowledge liaison to your IT team. *Identify required services. By understanding your business you will be able to identify and implement required services that will help drive its success. Integration, process insight and versatility will be watchwords for 2003. *Become an evergreen professional. Pursue emerging and enduring knowledge, competencies and experiences. Technology is always changing. Business is always changing. By constantly positioning yourself and your IT skills as they apply to your organization’s short and long-term goals, you will stay aligned with its strategic road map. *Seek leadership opportunities and accountability. This is not the year to lay low. Reach out to the business units. Step up to the plate and take on an emerging role. *Strengthen your knowledge of business principles. There are dozens of ways to gain business acumen: accounting, communications, financial analysis, marketing, cost management and so on. The addition of business know-how will enhance your career and increase your credibility in the business units. *Get connected. There are project leaders and champions in every organization. Network with them. This is not a political agenda item. In 2003, careers are built on both what you know as well as who you know. *Find new value in prior IT investments. Revisit the applications and technologies that have been deployed and re-apply functions and features to new processes. How well you apply these components will be enhanced by your new knowledge of business processes, customer markets and financial goals. -

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